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Rifle/Meeker advance

Phil Sandoval

The great thing about prep wrestling on the Western Slope is fans don’t have to wait long or make a long trip to see a top-flight event.And today’s Meeker-at-Rifle dual meet is a “must-see” experience for the grappling enthusiast.Both teams are among Colorado’s best prep wrestling squads, according to the latest On The Mat state poll. The Bears are ranked No. 12 in Class 4A, and the Class 2A Cowboys are No. 2 in the small-school rankings.Likewise, both teams feature a slew of highly ranked individuals.Meeker boasts eight wrestlers slotted among the top 15 in Class 2A, six of whom are in either the No. 1 or No. 2 spots. Rifle is a shade behind with six individuals ranked in the 4A poll.Three matches feature state-ranked opponents battling to improve their spot on the list by knocking off a ranked opponent.In the lower weights, Rifle seniors Eddie Kreimier (119 pounds) and Luke Wooten (125 pounds), both ranked fifth in the 4A, square off against Meeker’s Wyatt Sampson and Cody Clark.Sampson is the Class 2A current No. 1 119-pound wrestler. Clark comes in at No. 2 in the 125-pound ranks.On the opposite side of the scale, heavyweights Andrew Stone, of Rifle, and Meeker’s Steve Rust are among Colorado’s best in their weight. Stone is No. 10 in the 4A poll, while Rust is No. 1 in 2A.Rifle’s additional state-ranked wrestlers heading into Thursday’s match are Tyler Thompson (No. 13, 130 pounds), Tyler Cose (No. 10, 152) and Casie Dunlap (No. 4, 171).Meeker’s roster boasts another No. 1 individual at 135 in Tyrell Stout and a pair of No. 2’s in Joe Leblanc (140) and Nick Ruckman (145).Meeker’s roster boasts another No. 1 individual at 135 in Tyrell Stout and a pair of No. 2’s in Joe Leblanc (140) and Nick Ruckman (145).


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